Friday, February 26, 2010

The City of Veneline - Part 2

Last time we looked at the history and style to the city of bridges. Now followsh a smattering of interesting places and groups to throw into it. These locations can also be used in other places in your game world. 

Before continuing, first I must rectify an omission which was pointed out by seaofstarsrpg, the military and security forces of Veneline were absent in part 1.

Veneline's days as a major military power are behind her, but with such a powerful hold on the culture and economy of the land, it would be foolish for any one kingdom to attempt to capture the city without retaliation. The government does employ a small navy to patrol the lagoon and nearby waters. These ships supplement the often impressive private navies held by the more powerful merchant organizations. Venete Tam is the most visible of these, with their flagship Dreadnaught Bahadur considered possibly the most powerful vessel to sail the waves.

Veneline does not employ a traditional watch, as many other cities do. The leading Noble house in each ward is required to provide security for their holdings as well as those within their neighborhood. Each house's private guards tend to reflect the family in power, thus passing from one ward to the other could result in any number of interactions with the law enforcement. Longtime residents of Veneline can tell you the best paths to take through the city to avoid particularly malicious house guards. Most of the streets are safe, but the farther east you travel, the more cut-throat the noble's squabbles tend to be.

Notable Locales
The Harbor of the Green Drakes
The primary shipping point for locations on the mainland, this harbor is famous for the twin massive copper statues of Guard Drakes which line it's entrance. The Harbor also allows barges and smaller vessels to pass through the grand canal to the Eastern Docks.

Mac Cahail's
Mac Cahail's is a fine dining restaurant which lies near the Eastern Docks. It is a favorite restaurant of several noble families, and serves a wide variety of customers. The food is reasonably priced given it's foreign nature. Mac Cahail is originally from a northern country, and his accent has made him popular with some local youngsters.

The House of Purple Silk
This palatial complex caters to the needs and wants of a wealthy clientele, some have even called it paradise on earth, which irritates those evangelists who refer to it instead as a den of sin. The courtesans who work there are famed for their discretion and skill, thus it is a favorite location for political deals.

The Dead Noblemen
Bearing a darker name than it's pleasant atmosphere deserves, this tavern and inn serves as a welcome place for relaxed folk looking for simple food and a good story or two. They offer moderate accommodations, and have a good variety of food and drink from the many cultures which mix in Veneline.

The Old Battery
This island has only one bridge connecting it to the rest of the isles which compose Veneline (of which there are over a hundred). It once served as a military training ground for Dragonborn legionnaires. But now it's open paths and high towers serve a seedier sort. The single bridge allows the Thieves guild to control most traffic, while the proximity to East Dock allows them to move about by boat without being noticed.

Verasalle Shipyards
Veneline was once an Imperial power, visible no where else more than at the massive dockworks which occupies the eastern portion of the city. Massive dry docks and ship scaffolds surround the still pond which holds completed ships before they are put to sea. Most construction these days is by commission of private parties, though the Veneline Navy still keeps a small fleet of powerful vessels in case of threat from hostile kingdoms, or even worse the beasts of The Dragon's Maw.

The Rhemoraz Bar
A haven for the adventurous, this dangerous establishment is owned by a Shadar-kai by the title of Orde'lin (meaning Slayer of the High Beast in Shade). The structure is build like a bunker, and it's bouncers aren't known to go easy, or mind the sight of blood.

The Grand Collegium
This center of learning is renowned throughout Southern Arras, and is spoken of within any learned region. Paired with the Academy of Expression, these institutes ensure that those who can afford their services are well educated.

Basilica of Saint Melanon
This massive building was constructed in 1394, and is the largest religious building in Veneline. It is a magnificent golden structure which faces the Plaza of Lions, dedicated to Melanon's symol. This plaza also connects to the Droge Palace, which faces the Church.

Allsaints Cathedral
An open air, covered cathedral with devotion spaces reserved for hundreds of gods and saints. The walls are crafted from a series of arches, allowing patrons to come and go freely from devotions. The government commissioned the structure to keep the envangelicals off the common streets and relegated to a single location. This has resulted in an economic boom to the quarter where the Cathedral stands.

Fate's Temple
A temple devoted to The Lord, The Fate, and The Master, the three forces of Universal Law. Also houses all the dead of the city within massive catacombs.

The offices of The Venete Tam Consortium
One of the largest trade consortium in Arras (or your own world), Venete Tam currently holds the lions share of trade rights with the neighboring continent of Rethelm (if you are in a single-continent world this is equally effective as rights with another large kingdom).

Tensions and Rumors
Many folks in the streets whisper about why Venete Tam requires such a vessel as the Bahadur to patrol their shipping lanes. Such a ship is better build to besiege towns and sink fleets, or at least that's how the rumor goes

The Church of the Great Three is the primary religion of Itania and Greater Erchanon. As such Veneline must pay some amount of respect to the Religious leaders of The Church. This includes the Grand Archon, who oversees the faith of the Great Three under Lord Dv'emok. Veneline's religious freedoms has earned it the ire of many of the more orthodox faithful.

Racial animosity rears it's head within the gilded streets of Veneline. The Tiefling gangs and Dragonborn thugs in particular wage a nasty shadow-war, punctuating the common noble-son's brawls with bloody battles.

The nature of the Watch in Veneline has left many merchants feeling the pinch. If you don't hire guards of your own, it's unlikely the private soldiers of others are going to protect your wares. Less scrupulous individuals have made a point of pointing out just how valuable their services are, and not all the merchants are bowing down to extortion. Perhaps some intrepid adventurers can make a coin or two out of the trouble brewing.

A particular voice has been heard throughout the streets of Veneline more and more these days. Arod Rivach is a dissenter against the political control the Noble Houses have over the city, and what's worse is that he hasn't been done away with yet. Have The Nobles assassins failed or is there more at work here?

Next - Person's of interest within Veneline.

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